Planning Committee refuse Magenta Living application for 11 houses and 2 bungalows in Upton (Kenilworth Gardens)

Planning Committee refuse Magenta Living application for 11 houses and 2 bungalows in Upton (Kenilworth Gardens)

Planning Committee refuse Magenta Living application for 11 houses and 2 bungalows in Upton (Kenilworth Gardens)

                                                             

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The Kenilworth Gardens item starts at 8 minutes 19 seconds in the video clip above and continues to the video clips below of Wirral Council’s Planning Committee meeting of the 20th November 2014.

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Cllr Matthew Patrick explains to Wirral Council's Planning Committee why they should reject planning application APP 14 00951 in Kenilworth Gardens Upton 20th November 2014
Cllr Matthew Patrick explains to Wirral Council’s Planning Committee why they should reject planning application APP 14 00951 in Kenilworth Gardens Upton 20th November 2014

The long running saga of planning application of planning application APP/14/00951: Unused Land, KENILWORTH GARDENS, UPTON, CH49 4ND – proposal to develop the site with residential units for affordable housing use, providing 11 no. two storey 2 bedroom houses, and 2 no. 2 bedroom bungalows (including 1 fully disabled access unit) finally reached a decision at Wirral Council at the Planning Committee meeting of the 20th November 2014.

The applicant was Wirral Partnership Homes Limited (T/A Magenta Living) and the agent Ainsley Gommon Architects.

Wirral Council had received this planning application on the 18th July 2014. At the Planning Committee on the 25th September 2014 a site visit was agreed. After that took place it had been due to be decided at the Planning Committee on the 22nd October 2014. However at the Planning Committee meeting on the 22nd October 2014 it was deferred to the Planning Committee meeting on the 20th November 2014 (making it over 4 months for a decision on this planning application to be reached.

Wirral Council planning officers had recommended in a report that the planning application be approved with various conditions.

The Planning Committee heard from the lead petitioner Jean Robinson, Chair of the Overchurch Residents Association who spoke against the planning application being approved. She referred to heritage reasons, ecological reasons and highway reasons why she thought the planning application should be refused.

The petitioner in favour of the application did not speak.

Rob Ware of Ainsley Gommon Architects (the agent on behalf of the applicant Wirral Partnership Homes Limited T/A Magenta Living) spoke after and explained the reasons why he thought that councillors should accept the planning application. He referred during this to a 34 year old tenant of the applicant with spinal injuries that was in need of a bungalow and would benefit from such a planning application being granted. He also referred to the highway concerns.

Cllr Matthew Patrick (ward councillor for Upton ward) also addressed the Planning Committee. He referred to the petition against the planning application, the petition in favour, the protection of urban greenspace, the uses that local residents put the land which included Easter egg hunts and litter picking.

He pointed out that trees on the site were protected by tree protection orders and how he felt that the application should be rejected because of policy HS4 as in his opinion it did not meet all the criteria for new housing as it would change the character of the area as well as another criteria in HS4.

Cllr Patrick also referred to the need to reduce crime, allow emergency vehicles access and the issue of bats, in fact three different species of bat! He felt the lighting would disturb the insects that the bats feed on and referred to a letter written from Wirral Wildlife in 2007 about the bats. He referred the Planning Committee to their legal obligation with regards to species protection and went on to refer again to policy HS4.

He wondered how the proposed disabled tenant would be able to safely access the property by foot as the proposed pavement was too narrow and finished by referring to the strength of feeling from the Overchurch Residents Association as residents had contacted him by phone, email and letter about this planning application. He urged the Planning Committee to reject the application.

After much discussion over many issues to do with the planning application ranging from highway issues, disability issues, bats and wildlife, emergency vehicle access, refuse vehicle access and garages, someone asked one of Wirral Council’s solicitors for legal advice about the issue of the application needing to rely on a future decision to unadopt the highway to proceed.

The solicitor referred to the proposed condition 9 which meant approval was conditional on the access road being formally stopped up and unadopted. She referred to the other reasons (other than a development) as to why the highway might be unadopted.

After much further debate, Cllr Stuart Kelly (Lib Dem spokesperson) moved refusal. This was seconded by Cllr Denise Realey (Vice-Chair).

All thirteen councillors present on the Planning Committee voted in favour of refusal.

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Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 26th September 2013 APP/13/00677: Land Adjacent to 16 Lingdale Road, West Kirby, CH48 5DQ – To sever the curtilage and erect 1 no. detached dwelling together with associated works

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 26th September 2013 APP/13/00677: Land Adjacent to 16 Lingdale Road, West Kirby, CH48 5DQ – To sever the curtilage and erect 1 no. detached dwelling together with associated works

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Continues from Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 26th September 2013 Minutes, Declarations of Interest and Site Visits.

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 26th September 2013 APP/13/00677: Land Adjacent to 16 Lingdale Road, West Kirby, CH48 5DQ – To sever the curtilage and erect 1 no. detached dwelling together with associated works

                          

The Chair, Cllr Bernie Mooney asked a Council officer called Cheryl to summarise the report. The officer said that the application was in a conservation area of large detached houses. In the officer’s view it was of an acceptable design. She said there was a condition for obscured glazing, that officers had recommended it for approval but there was a qualifying petition.

The Chair invited a representative of the petitioners to talk to the Planning Committee for up to five minutes. The petitioner introduced herself as Kate Evans of 15 Lingdale Road. She and the petitioners felt it was an alien design and overdevelopment of the site. On the petitioner’s behalf three drawings were passed to the Planning Committee to illustrate their objections. She felt it was out of context with the arts and crafts theme of the Conservation Area as well as too modern and too big. In her opinion the modern windows were at odds with the character of the rest of the road.

Kate Evans said that one of the drawings demonstrated their concerns about the dominant gable as well as their concern about the eaves line. During the site visit, the petitioners thought that the ground levels were incorrect by over a metre and they’d been told that the levels would be checked before the Planning Committee meeting. The petitioners wanted to make sure the street profile was maintained and felt that approval of the planning application would cause harmful damage to this.

The Chair invited the applicant to speak. A Matthew Ashton of the applicant’s agent (MgMaStudio Ltd) spoke on behalf of the applicant Mr. Norman Cowley. Mr. Ashton said that as the architect he had designed the scheme and there had been no objections from the statutory consultees. He requested that they endorse the case made in the officer’s report. He explained the reasons why Mr. Cowley wanted to build the property and how in his opinion that the proposed design drew upon the character of the Conservation Area. Following a meeting with the petitioners, they had revised their proposal to deal with their representations. He reassured the Planning Committee that the drawings were to a high quality and he believed that the design would be a positive contribution to the street scape and Conservation Area.

No ward councillor addressed the Planning Committee. The Chair referred to the comments made on overdevelopment, ground levels and materials. Cllr David Elderton said that the site visit had been helpful and asked for the display of the site plan on the screen. He referred to the roof levels of the proposed property in relation to the neighbouring properties. His first question was about the distance from the proposed house to the fence line and the adjacent property. He referred to his forty years working in the construction industry and although he felt the design was acceptable, his concern was the size which he believed was overdevelopment.

Matthew Davies replied that the distance to the boundary was 2.4m and the distance to the adjacent house was 5.6m. Cllr Elderton asked a question about windows. Matthew Davies answered that there was a kitchen window on the ground floor and a bedroom window at first floor level. Cllr Elderton said that if the property was built, there would be a large wall only 5 metres away from the adjacent property, with the fence halfway between the two. Matthew Davies said this was correct.

Cllr Elderton asked about the roof lines compared to the neighbouring properties. An officer called Cheryl said that the drawings submitted showed the relationship with the properties on either side. If there were different levels to those on the plans submitted, then even if the planning application was approved, there would have to be a further application before it could be constructed. She pointed out that condition eight asked for proper levels, if there was any error it would be picked up and enforcement action could be taken.

Cllr Elderton said they had established it was no higher than the ridge line of adjacent properties and about the same height if not lower. Cllr Simon Mountney expressed confusion at retrospective action over ground levels. Cheryl again referred to condition eight and said that it was in their control to discharge that condition, if a thorough survey showed different levels they would ask for another application to rectify the variance.

The Chair said that it was a huge development that was closer to the property on the left than the applicant’s property which troubled her on the site visit. Cllr David Elderton said that he would propose rejecting the application on the basis that the relationship with adjoining properties would result in overshadowing and overbearance because of its size. Its height and setting would be harmful to the amenities of the adjoining dwellings and would be contrary to policy HS4 of Wirral’s Unitary Development Plan. Cllr Irene Williams seconded his proposal for refusal.

There was a vote and councillors voted as follows.

In favour of refusal: Cllr Bernie Mooney, Cllr David Elderton, Cllr Stuart Kelly, Cllr Wendy Clements, Cllr Anita Leech, Cllr Simon Mountney, Cllr Irene Williams, Cllr Paul Hayes, Cllr Brian Kenny and Cllr Eddie Boult (10)
Against refusal: Cllr Denise Realey and Cllr Joe Walsh (2)
Abstention: Cllr Christina Muspratt (1)

Application APP/13/00677 was therefore refused (10:2:1).

Continues at Planning Committee (Wirral Council) 26th September 2013 APP/13/00866: 151 Victoria Road, New Brighton, CH45 9LB – Change of use of a property from a single residence to a house of multiple occupation to provide 12 bedrooms with communal kitchen, living rooms and bathrooms. Also to include alterations to windows to the front elevation.

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Planning Committee (Wirral Council) (27th June 2013) OUT/13/0040 41 Noctorum Avenue, Noctorum, CH43 9RZ

A report on Wirral Council’s Planning Committee meeting held on the 27th June 2013 | OUT/13/0040 41 Noctorum Avenue, Noctorum, CH43 9RZ

Continues from Planning Committee (Wirral Council) (27th June 2013) OUT/13/0040 41 Noctorum Avenue, Noctorum, CH43 9RZ.

Cllr Steve Foulkes: My issue is is very much around the errm the the the sort of errm pattern, so the reasons for refusal would be that dwellings sited on this rear garden area as proposed would introduce a pattern of development that would lead to a detrimental change in the character of the area and furthermore by introducing additional domestic activity into this backland site, the existing standards of residential amenities in the immediate vicinity of the properties surrounding the site will be seriously diminished.

Therefore I believe the proposal is therefore contrary to the guidance in HS4 and HS10 and those are my reasons for refusal, so moved.

Councillor Bernie Mooney (Chair): So, errm, the recommendation is for voting is that this application is for refusal, for those refusal reasons which have been been recommended and have been recommended and seconded. So could we put that to the vote please? Errm all those who are minded to refuse this application for those recommended refusal reasons.

(Matthew Rushton mutters something that can’t be heard to Cllr Bernie Mooney).

Matthew Rushton: OK, through you Chair, before we go to the final vote, you seem to make reference to the National Planning Policy Framework as well in your reasons for refusal as well as the Unitary Development Plan.

Cllr Steve Foulkes: OK, the proposal therefore meets the National, National Planning Policy Framework, can’t hurt to add those small words.

Cllr Bernie Mooney (Chair): Is everybody happy with that? Does everybody understand? No, so we can go to the vote on this for refusal so can we have a vote on refusal? OK, that application has been unanimously refused.

Cllr Bernie Mooney (Chair): We’ll move onto number thirteen please, errm could we have a presentation for number thirteen please?

Continues at Planning Committee (Wirral Council) (27th June 2013) APP/13/00574 5 Speedwell Drive, Barnston, CH60 2SY Change of use of garage to dog grooming parlour.

Planning Committee (Wirral Council) (27th June 2013) OUT/13/0040 41 Noctorum Avenue, Noctorum, CH43 9RZ

A report on Wirral Council’s Planning Committee meeting held on the 27th June 2013 | OUT/13/0040 41 Noctorum Avenue, Noctorum, CH43 9RZ

Continued from Planning Committee (Wirral Council) (27th June 2013) OUT/13/0040 41 Noctorum Avenue, Noctorum, CH43 9RZ.

Cllr Bernie Mooney (Chair): Because you know, because, because the petitioner didn’t want to speak, errm, and so errm, that would mean that so… deny the ward councillor so if you would like to, if you would like to introduce yourself Denise, please.

Cllr Denise Roberts: Yes, Denise Roberts, ward councillor.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak. I would also like to thank a number of committee members that took the time to attend Tuesday’s site visit. As ward councillor, I take an interest in this planning application and asked for it to be taken out of delegation so you could be made aware of Member’s concerns and objections.

The proposed development for two dormer bungalows is squeezed into a decreasing garden, it’s incongruous with this built-up environment because of a mature residential barrier of houses with interlocking gardens. Supplementary planning guidance has been outlined states that all new housing developments should be set out with a private rear garden, interlocked with other rear gardens.

While the proposed dwelling will have interlocking gardens, the access road will require probably an area of an existing interlocking garden, if you take out a bit you have a security problem. UDP policies HS4 and HS10 on new housing and backland developments state that planning proposals should not result in a detrimental change to the character of the area, nor should there be a loss of privacy or a separate enclosure affecting the enjoyment of residents.

Means and justification in HS10 also state that the existence of large gardens does not necessarily form the scope for development and the size and appearance of gardens will be of great importance to the character of an neighbourhood.

Continues at Planning Committee (Wirral Council) (27th June 2013) OUT/13/0040 41 Noctorum Avenue, Noctorum, CH43 9RZ.

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